FIVE places in Essex have been named as among the top 50 most desirable spots to live in the UK.

Brentwood was ranked fifth in the Halifax’s Quality of Life survey. Uttlesford came in at 18th, Rochford 24th, Colchester 28th and Maldon at 44th.

The top spot was secured by Hart, in Hampshire.

The annual report looked at jobs, the housing market, education, health and crime, as well as the weather, traffic flows and broadband access.

Gareth Jacob, sales director at developer Linden Homes Eastern, said: “Colchester has always been a much sought-after place to live as it blends its rich heritage with a host of exceptional modern facilities.”